By Daniel Hunter

House prices grew 9.6% in April compared with last year, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

It shows a strong rise on March, when prices were up 7.4% in a year.

The rise is believed to be as a result of a lack of available homes on the market, which is understood to have been affected by the uncertainty in the lead up to the election.

Scotland saw prices rise by 14.6% - the fastest growth since 2007.

There was also double digit growth in the east of England (11.4%), London (11.2%) and the south east of England (11.2%).

The average house price in the UK is now £273,000, the ONS said.

TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady said: "House prices are going up four times faster than people's wages. No wonder mortgage approvals are falling and first-time buyers are struggling to save a large enough deposit.